The Michigan Economic Development Corp. Thursday issued two requests for proposals for programs to aid Michigan entrepreneurs in commercializing competitive edge technologies in fields that now include agricultural processing and information technology.

Gov. Rick Snyder Tuesday signed legislation authorizing the broadened emphasis to the prior focus on four sectors: alternative energy, life sciences, homeland security and defense, and advanced manufacturing and materials.

“The expanded eligibility of the 21st Century Jobs Fund helps us support growing companies in a number of leading tech sectors,” said MEDC president and CEO Michael A. Finney. “Early-stage companies require seed capital and a robust entrepreneurial ecosystem . These initiatives will help us build and sustain cutting-edge businesses and in turn, generate new private investment and create new jobs for Michigan.”

One RFP seeks entrepreneurial support services input from non-profit entities for programs to enhance and sustain Michigan’s entrepreneurial ecosystem through business acceleration services, business incubation, entrepreneurial talent development and early-stage business counseling in competitive-edge technology sectors. On Wednesday, the Michigan Strategic Fund approved $12 million in funding for this initiative.

The RFP is online at as are specific details and requirements of the application process. Proposals are due by June 3.

The MSF also approved $13 million to fund a second RFP for an innovative early stage seed capital initiative. It will solicit seed investment funds and non-profit entities that will provide capital to new companies during the investigation and feasibility phases of innovation and technology development. The RFP is available online at along with specific details and requirements of the application process. Proposals are due by June 3.

The 21st Century Jobs Fund, a 10-year initiative begun in 2005, is an MSF program that is administered by the MEDC to accelerate the growth and diversification of Michigan’s economy. The MEDC, a public-private partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life. For more information on the MEDC’s initiatives and programs, visit


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